A critical evaluation of "territorial separation" as a method of addressing ethnic conflicts: the case study of Kirkuk

Jalal, Ako (2019) A critical evaluation of "territorial separation" as a method of addressing ethnic conflicts: the case study of Kirkuk. PhD thesis, University of Nottingham.

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During the establishment of Iraq in 1921, the colonial states forcibly integrated Kurdish-majority areas into the country. This became the basis for decades of struggle between Iraqi governments and the Kurdish national movement, including the particular case of identifying the territorial governance of Kirkuk, resulting in long-lasting ethnic conflicts, cultural hatred and bloodshed, especially between Arabs and Kurds.

Applying of autonomy in 1970 failed due to not addressing the territorial governance of Kirkuk. Since 2003, power sharing applied through distributing the governmental posts of Kirkuk, but this exacerbated ethnic conflicts and increased violence. From 2005 to 2008, the constitutional mechanism applied to settle territorial governance of Kirkuk through Article 140 could not implement by the deadline in December 2007. Thus, since 2008, there has been little academic consideration of a viable mechanism to address ethnic conflicts in Kirkuk. This study fills this gap through examining territorial separation, based on applied and failed mechanisms. Territorial separation observed as de facto for three years, during the ISIS War from 2014 to 2017, which stabilised the Province and reduced ethnic conflicts.

This thesis uses qualitative methods to explore related ethnic factors including culture, language, sectarianism, population density, and territoriality to examine territorial separation in Kirkuk. Seven focus groups (with 56 participants) and 32 in-depth, individual interviews held with local residents of Kirkuk, politicians, and academics. The thesis found that the main reasons for ethnic conflicts in Kirkuk are land, border, and territorial governance, which have not discussed previously, by the applied mechanisms, within federal system context. Thus, territorial separation is the best viable and effective solution to address ethnic conflicts in Kirkuk.

Item Type: Thesis (University of Nottingham only) (PhD)
Supervisors: Tang, Amy
Pupavac, Vanessa
Keywords: Ethnic conflict, Iraq, Kurdistān
Subjects: D History - General and Old World > DS Asia
J Political science > JQ Political institutions (Asia, Africa, Australasia, etc.)
Faculties/Schools: UK Campuses > Faculty of Social Sciences, Law and Education > School of Politics and International Relations
Item ID: 56913
Depositing User: Jalal, Ako
Date Deposited: 27 Mar 2020 08:35
Last Modified: 06 May 2020 09:31
URI: https://eprints.nottingham.ac.uk/id/eprint/56913

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